Dana Falconberry suffuses the majesty of nature in the orchestral pop-folk she elegantly crafts in Leelanau, her inaugural release for Antenna Farm. Citing influences ranging from the prints of artist Gwen Frostic, the books of Willa Cather, and the stark, childs-eye beauty of the Swedish film Let The Right One In, Falconberry finds lyrical inspiration in her idyllic childhood retreats to the Great Lakes State’s Leelanau peninsula. The result is a set of eloquent verse reflecting upon the region to which she has returned almost every summer since she was born. “There is this general feeling of nostalgia, but the album is also about the triumphs of being a kid – a celebration of running on the beach or in the woods,” Falconberry explains.
For Leelanau, Falconberry was determined to push herself as a songwriter while staying true to the sound and aesthetic that had earned her a growing fan base in Austin and beyond. While previous recordings emphasized the sparse and delicate, on Leelanau, Dana’s fairy-like voice is bolstered by the exquisite orchestration of a six-piece band (Dvorak, Karla Manzur, Matthew Shepherd, Christopher Cox, Lindsey Verrill) who are central to the bountiful soundscapes Falconberry creates. The newly developed string arrangements (arranged by bandmember Cox and performed by Austin’s Tosca String Quartet) match the growth in Falconberry’s songwriting approach: “I used to write more about love and heartbreak, but I find now that I am more interested in complex ideas and subtle emotions rather than the sweeping melodramatic stuff.”
For the recording of Leelanau, Falconberry and her newly formed band sequestered themselves in a gospel church-turned-recording studio in east Austin, essentially moving in. To say that the songs were rooted in places and visuals is no overstatement; Dana made prints of scenes for her bandmembers to study while recording their parts, like visual aids. Leelanau was recorded by Grant Johnson, mixed by Danny Reisch (of Shearwater), and produced by Johnson, Cox, and Falconberry.
Leelanau will be released on CD/MP3 and 140 gram vinyl October 9th, 2012. The vinyl version will include a non-cd bonus track, Squirrel Song.